Every single brand will need to deal with mean, rude or downright nasty social media comments at some point or another. This is, after all, the nature of the social media space. The fact that people have the ability to interact with your social content and engage is a good thing. With that said, it can be daunting when you deal with a horrible comment on your Facebook post, Twitter update, LinkedIn article or YouTube video.
The Worst Way to Respond to Social Media Comments
While there are many ways that you can respond, either by politely addressing the issue, removing the comment or even blocking the person if they are being aggressive or showing prejudice, there are also many ways that you certainly don’t want to respond to social media comments.
Some of the worst ways to respond to social media comments include the following:
Responding with anger or rudeness
Even if you feel that someone is attacking your company or page, the worst way to respond is bashing out an angry or mean reply. Remember that every comment made on any of your pages is visible by everyone who follows you, and, in many cases, people do not have to follow you to see your responses. When you reply in anger or with a rude or dismissive comment, there is far more chance of the situation getting out of control. It is very unlikely that the person leaving the comment will simply apologise or back down. Instead, they will get angry, too. Soon, you will have a very public fight all over your social page – something that is never ideal.
Responding too quickly
At the same time, it is also a good idea to take a moment to think before you reply. It is far too easy to respond with anger or a biting remark that ends up backfiring horribly. A rushed reply can end up making the situation worse – especially if the person leaving the comment does not feel as though you are genuinely listening to what they are trying to say. Taking a moment to plan your response will allow you to get control of the situation. You could then decide whether you want to leave the comment or remove it completely. You can also decide on the most polite and straight-forward way to respond to the comment.
Responding too late (or not at all)
That does not mean waiting so long that there is enough time for others to join the comment party, however. Ideally, you want to try and respond on the same day. Not responding at all or waiting too long can end up making people even more irate. Whether or not the person commenting has any genuine grievance or they simply do not agree with what you have shared, a very belated comment or a lack of comment sends the message that you do not value feedback or take it seriously. Neither of those is good for your social media eputation.
When you take a moment to think before you respond, you will always be sure that you do not make social media comments even more stressful.